Schmaling began participation in a new automation system in October. We upgraded from a Union List member of the library consortium, PrairieCat, to a Basic Online member. This move creates increased patron autonomy. Patrons now have 24 – 7 online access to their patron accounts; allowing them to place holds, order materials via inter-library loan, renew materials (until renewal limits are reached), pay library fees and fines with a credit or debit card, make reading lists, and more!
For complete instructions on searching, placing holds, and utilizing all the benefits of your personal account in PrairieCat: please see our PrairieCat Catalog page, or pick up a printed brochure at the library.
All Schmaling patrons will continue to use their current library cards and if they do not wish to use their online accounts, they may choose not to –library staff can still assist all patrons with their needs. Patrons may be asked to update their registration information for the library’s records, but for the most part, patron information has been added from the library’s current automation system to the new one.
In accordance with PrairieCat circulation policies, several Schmaling library policy changes will go into effect on the 20th as the library “Goes Live”. One such change will be the maximum fine charged per item. Currently, overdue items hit a maximum fine of $5.00 per item. As of October 20th, fines will continue to accrue on each item until the maximum of $10.00 per item is hit. The patron fine limit will also change. Currently, a Schmaling patron may only check out materials if he/she has fines under $3.00. The PrairieCat fine limit is $5.00, so patrons will be able to check out materials until their fines hit that limit. The notification process for holds, overdue items, and billing for lost items will also change. Many of the notification processes will become automated through PrairieCat.